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Friday, 6 October, 2000, 10:30 GMT 11:30 UK
New blow for giant catamaran
Team Philips
Team Philips set sail for New York on Thursday
The giant Team Philips catamaran is again back in port after suffering more technical problems.

Hundreds of supporters lined the River Dart, in Devon yesterday to see Pete Goss and his crew sail the 120ft-long boat out into the English Channel.

But 18 hours later the crew abandoned the trans-Atlantic voyage because of a swaying movement at the base of one of the 135ft masts.


She was going beautifully when the crew noticed a bit of movement at the bottom of the mast

Team Philips spokeswoman
A spokeswoman for the team said the catamaran had turned back as a "precautionary measure".

"She was going beautifully when the crew noticed a bit of movement at the bottom of the mast.

"It was of sufficient concern to decide to come back and postpone the sea trials,'' she said.

Team Philips' first sea trails ended in disaster last April when a 40ft section of the bow snapped off

The 4m catamaran had been due to complete a return voyage to New York before joining the starting line up of a round the world race in December.

support for the launch
There was plenty of support for the repaired vessel
As he set out yesterday, Mr Goss, a 38-year-old former Royal Marine, described the trip as "Judgement Day". But he was refusing to let the previous problems dampen his spirits.

"I do not feel I am going out to see whether the bow will stay or not.

"I am going to see how much I can get out of a good boat," he said.

Royal launch

The catamaran was officially launched by the Queen in March. Just two weeks later the bow snapped and Team Philips required 250,000 of repairs.

Team Philips catamaran
Largest carbon structure in the world
Dimensions bigger than the centre court at Wimbledon
Masts the height of ten double decker buses
The catamaran is again heading back for the boatyard in Totnes, where the mast will be removed for checks on the bearing.

If the new problems can be ironed out Mr Goss will resume sea trials soon. He intends to be in Barcelona by New Year's Eve for the start of a round the world challenge known simply as The Race.

Team Philips is one of 20 vessels skippered by some of the world's most experienced sailors, all hoping to circumnavigate the globe in fewer than 80 days.

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See also:

23 Sep 00 | UK
Catamaran back in action
03 Aug 00 | UK
Relaunch for superyacht
12 Apr 00 | UK
Superyacht returns home
30 Mar 00 | UK
Super yacht's bow found
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